Moyes eager to keep piling pressure on top four despite recent setbacks

David Moyes, West Ham manager

David Moyes says he is still “excited” by West Ham’s pursuit of a Champions League place despite suffering consecutive defeats recently.

The Hammers remain in the hunt for a place in the top four despite back-to-back defeats by Newcastle and Chelsea. They are three points behind the fourth-placed Blues and have a favourable run-in compared to some of the teams around them.

It is a far cry from this stage of the season last year when West Ham were in the thick of the battle to beat the drop.

“We have not been thinking about the last two games. I am really excited about the five games to go; we’re in a great position,” said Hammers boss Moyes.

“This time last year with five games to go I was crapping myself because I didn’t know if we were going to be a Premier League team.

“I am really enjoying that we have got a good team and we’re playing good stuff. We had a couple of bad results recently but prior to that, we had not lost two games in a row.

“So the big thing now is to keep doing what we have been doing most of the season and that has included winning and playing well in a lot of the games and scoring goals. So we will try and do that again.”

West Ham could soon be boosted by the return of key players Michail Antonio and Declan Rice. Moyes said striker Antonio could even have a chance at Burnley on Monday following his latest hamstring injury.

“He’s working with the physios out on the grass. I wouldn’t rule him out but I don’t want to rule him in as well, so let’s hope that he has a chance,” added Moyes.

“We’ve had Aaron Creswell, Declan Rice, Arthur Masuaku and Micky Antonio out, we had Craig Dawson suspended, so we had a few out and we are trying to get them all back if we can. Not just Micky, we are working to try and get the others back as well.”

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Moyes reacts to red card record

Moyes will also have Fabian Balbuena available after the defender’s red card against Chelsea, when he caught Ben Chilwell as he kicked the ball, was rescinded.

It is the second time in recent weeks that West Ham have had a dismissal overturned after Tomas Soucek was red-carded against Fulham.

Moyes said: “I think we have had five out of eight red cards rescinded in recent years at West Ham, which is quite an incredible number!”

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